The Spirit of Jefferson and Farmer's Advocate published a story this week about the Battlescapes project. Reading it was like opening a time capsule; I had been interviewed for it four months ago. Already since then, I’ve mentally moved on from Battlescapes. Numerous musical concepts have been picked up only to be put down again due to logistical limitations. And those limitations have been discouraging.
While some of those limitations can change, the ones that seem most frustrating are circumstances that don’t change. But I have those limitations because of more important priorities, and if I'm honest, taking those priorities away would also extinguish much creative inspiration. The tension and dynamism of real life fuel art. Battlescapes would not exist if a limiting medical situation hadn’t pushed my family to move here or pushed my husband to start running. Then there are numerous unreleased songs that wouldn’t exist without the literature I encountered during my daughter’s education.
This is a time many musicians can’t do anything but write, but I’d be surprised if I was the only one who has felt a creative malaise as the schedule has flattened. Art is fueled by living and often steered by routine. It’s an uphill climb to retain those things right now.
As disappointment was mounting with what Vandalia River has produced to date, re-reading the story behind Battlescapes and the original vision for Vandalia River helped me remember that Vandalia River is a net to catch the music that arises from life and loving people.
How freeing that is.
P.S. Josh Garrels released a new album today that I've really enjoyed so far.
And a shout-out to William in Argentina for including "Schoolhouse Ridge" in his playlist! It's an inspirational collection of well known classics and lesser known newer works.